This week, the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”), in conjunction with the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, released model Notices of Privacy Practices. The notices, which have been developed for use by health care providers and health plans, come in different formats:

  • an 8-page booklet;
  • a 5-page layered notice that summarizes key details on the first page and includes the full content of the booklet on the remaining four pages;
  • a 5-page condensed version of the 8-page booklet; and
  • a 6-page text-only version of the booklet.

The model notices contain the new content requirements set forth in the Omnibus Rule issued in January 2013. OCR provides instructions for using the model notices on its website, and notes that health care providers and health plans can simply input their entity-specific information into the model and then print the notices for distribution or post them on their websites.